Relative to the last reply, the main reason I replaced the seals was that the brake shoes were so oily that I couldn't stop the tractor when I needed. I suppose that you could spray the shoes with brake cleaner regularly rather than replace the seals. Additionally, I would expect the shop labor to exceed 8 hours if they had experience and the right tools. I had over 8 hours of helper time from friends and family. Also, for completeness, when I checked the free play of the axles in and out, I had an interesting result. With one axle in, the free play was over 1/4 inch. I found from the manual that you need both axles in place and the spec is 4 to 12 thousandths measured on one (either) side. I used a chisel to wedge one side out then measured the other side with a vernier caliber at a convenient spot moving the shaft in and out by hand. With the original shims in both sides and a few bolts snugged down, it was over 50 thousandths. I removed one shim from one side. It was 30 thousandths thick. The free play was now about 20 thousandths and I decided to stop. You should be able to buy different shim thicknesses, but I didn't have them. When I moved the wedge chisel to the other side, and did the measurement on the far side, it was the same. The tractor has been working well since then. I also use the brakes to reduce the turn radius when mowing. One last note: I would not expect to use that puller assembly again. Anyone who might want it can contact me and have it for the cost of shipping (no guarantees that you will be successful using it). It probably weighs 40-50 lbs. I would like to have leased the professional tool but couldn't locate one.
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